Why TV Networks Should Support Net Neutrality

If you run a TV network, broadcast or cable, you should be spending a lot of money to support Net Neutrality. You should have every lobbyist you own getting on the Net Neutrality train.  Why ? Because in a net neutrality environment no bits get priority over any other bits. All bits are equal.  In such an environment, all bits content with each other to ride the net.

When that happens, bits collide. When bits collide they slow down. Sometimes they dont reach their destination and need to be retransmitted. Often they dont make it at all.

When video bits dont arrive to their destination in a timely manner, internet video consumers get an experience that is worse than what traditional tv distribution options .

that is good for traditional TV.

Me personally. I don’t  support Net Neutrality. I think there will applications that require lots of bandwidth, that will change our lives. If the applications that could change our lives have to compete with your facebook page loads and twitter feeds among the zillion of other data elements carried across the net, IMHO, thats a bad thing.

But thats me.

If you believe that over the top video can impact the future of TV, and thats a bad thing for your business,  then you should be a big time supporter of Net Neutrality.  Its your best friend.

20 thoughts on “Why TV Networks Should Support Net Neutrality

  1. Pingback: The key to understanding net neutrality: Anonymity=good, egalitarianism=bad: Oddhead Blog: Prediction Markets, Gambling, Electronic Commerce, Artificial Intelligence: David Pennock: Yahoo! Research

  2. Pingback: Mark Cuban on Net Neutrality « The Enterprise Blog

  3. Rather than typing more I’ll just link to another rational person’s blog

    http://www.zachbair.com/

    Comment by techzn -

  4. Emergency systems would be given top priority in any sanely run network. Voice and video would get priority over data that takes less bandwidth and can be sequenced out of order.

    The point of net neutrality is not to say “F this everything goes!” It’s to keep ISPs from censoring and ruining the internet in favor of their other endeavors. For instance time warner cable and their extreme dislike for freely provided television content on network websites. It’s to keep them from price gouging and making their own rules when they have a monopoly or at best duopoly. Their costs continue to go down, while they say they have to raise prices. You can’t show me numbers that say otherwise unless you lie about it.

    Your concerns would be real, the fact that entertainment shouldn’t cause lag in say 911 VOIP calls or something. This is where network administration comes in. I don’t assume there is anything in net neutrality saying network administrators will be a thing of the past.

    Use common sense, first of all. I like how you use the argument that we just don’t have the bandwidth for all of these new applications to coexist, yet ISPs say upgrading to DOCSIS 3.0 is pointless because that much bandwidth isn’t needed yet.

    I guess the best way to put it, is after some form of net neutrality is passed into law, and the internet and all of our means of communication do not suddenly implode, you will see what I was talking about.

    Comment by techzn -

  5. Mark, good to see you speaking the truth and being insightful as usual. It’s a shame that sites like DSL Reports have nothing better to do but mindlessly libel you without in any way refuting your ideas.

    Comment by brettglass -

  6. Mark, good to see you speaking the truth and being insightful as usual. It’s a shame that sites like DSL Reports have nothing better to do but mindlessly libel you without in any way refuting your ideas.

    Comment by brettglass -

  7. Couldn’t agree more.

    Comment by parkeren -

  8. Great thought-provoking post, Mark. The topic of Net Neutrality always seems to get the blood up.

    Net Neutrality bickering reminds me of my college days when we would register for classes. Certain types of people would get “priority registration.” Disabled students got first dibs, followed by scholarship athletes, then came the seniors and so on. Took me 5 ½ years to get the classes I needed to graduate. Students always whined about the athletes. But hey, that’s a state school for you. And athletes helped fill the university’s coffers.

    In the future you propose I wonder what kind of bits would end up at the top of the food chain? Who would decide that? And how much would it cost to buy your way onto the top of the pyramid? Because that’s what we’re really talking about here isn’t it?

    I suppose it’s inevitable that when resources are limited there’s going to be a prioritization process. It just makes me sad to think that kids being born today are going to have their access to information limited by the size of Daddy’s wallet.

    Comment by sudojudo -

  9. Pingback: Stop the Cap! » Blog Archive » Abusive Relationship: Mark Cuban’s Ongoing Love Affair With Big Cable, Despite Having His Networks Thrown Off Time Warner Cable

  10. This assumes, of course, that the tv networks have any idea what they are doing in the online space. As evidenced by the free giveaways of content on Hulu, etc., thereby completely devaluing their most treasured properties, they do not. Have any idea what the hell they’re doing, that is.

    Comment by denexile -

  11. Pingback: Net neutrality isn’t as black and white as I’d like it to be | evan bregman

  12. I don’t watch t.v.

    Comment by kpurfield -

  13. So your latest basketball telecast should crowd out my call for help with a heart attack? Should have priority over my homework? Should delay my vote? I don’t think so.

    The commons don’t need the highest bidder deciding the common good. If you want a guaranteed fast lane for your bits, build or buy your own private road. Plenty of operators will sell it to you.

    From MC> You almost got it right. My basketball game could crowd out your call for help with a heart attack. That is part of net neutrality.

    Comment by Phil Wolff -

  14. So, the TV folks should lobby to make the internet as bad an experience as possible?

    What’s your recommendation to save the airlines: lobby against spending on road repairs to make driving as bad an experience as possible?

    You are actually recommending companies spend money to lobby the government instead of spending that money to make their products better. The sad part is is that you’re probably right. Lobbying probably is more effective than innovating.

    We’re so screwed…

    Comment by dinzer99 -

  15. http://www.merinews.com/catFull.jsp?articleID=145697

    CERN’s got you covered Mark.

    From MC> Actually, it does no good for the last mile.

    Comment by forestvillian -

  16. The other solution to preferential treatment, is to disallow internet providers from being content providers.

    Comment by kraki -

  17. So who decides what the life changing applications are that get preferential treatment across the networks? Maybe, instead of the internet companies complaining they don’t have the bandwidth for this or that, they should increase their available bandwidth. Lay more fiber.

    Comment by kraki -

  18. Net neutrality is good to an extent, but when it derides innovation it becomes bad. I’m in favor of getting broadband to as many places as humanly possible, getting past the hurdles of poverty and the growing digital divide.

    At the same time, Mark is right, the Internet only has so much capacity. Consumption growth is far outpacing capacity, eventually we’ll reach a breaking point at this pace. Further, without differentiation carriers and developers will never receive proper compensation for innovation.

    Everyone should have access to basic service, but advanced users should pay more for better service levels or access to cutting edge apps.

    Comment by mjsenno -

  19. I think that kind of misses the point of net neutrality supporters. I suppose it depends how you define net neutrality.

    I don’t think anyone would argue that we need different protocols that push certain types of traffic through the pipes in different manners. Live video/audio chatting needs to be pushed through in a different way than your Facebook page. Yes sometimes the video takes some precedence over the Facebook page, but not always, and that’s ok.

    To me, net neutrality is not allowing the content providers to prefer their own services. i.e. Comcast shouldn’t set up a video streaming site, give it enormous bandwidth, and then throttle down access to Hulu.

    At some point we should define some standards for different types of traffic. And each network provider should decide how they want to treat each of those types of traffic.

    Regardless, the backbone of the internet certainly faces a challenging future in the next decade or so as online video realllly ramps up (and who knows what other applications come…)

    Comment by brakerdizzle -

  20. So, I’m a little confused here. If a life-changing application will get precedent over facebook ads, then why are we to believe that Youtube or Hulu will be receiving better bandwith?

    Did I miss something? I’m not an expert on this topic, and I’m sure you know a lot more than I do…

    http://whowhatwherewheny.wordpress.com/2009/08/03/best-buy-writes-the-book-on-internet-marketing/

    Comment by Devin -

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